Autumn Comes
- Poetry of Li He


- Last updated: 2024-04-11 19:36:26

Autumn Comes by Li He





English Translation

Windswept wutong trees shocking and the warrior bitter,

Lights dimming, the Luowei weeps wintry cloth.

Who would read this bamboo-slip of a book?

And not let it be gutted and pulverized by moths.

Anxiety tonight has pulled my bowels straight,

Cold rain and sweet souls the versifier mourn.

Ghosts from autumn graves chant Bao Zhao’s poems,

Bitter blood over millenniums under the earth jasper green.

By Li He

Why Chinese poems is so special?
The most distinctive features of Chinese poetry are: concision- many poems are only four lines, and few are much longer than eight; ambiguity- number, tense and parts of speech are often undetermined, creating particularly rich interpretative possibilities; and structure- most poems follow quite strict formal patterns which have beauty in themselves as well as highlighting meaningful contrasts.
How to read a Chinese poem?
Like an English poem, but more so. Everything is there for a reason, so try to find that reason. Think about all the possible connotations, and be aware of the different possibilities of number and tense. Look for contrasts: within lines, between the lines of each couplet and between successive couplets. Above all, don't worry about what the poet meant- find your meaning.

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